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FieldComm Group kicks off 2016 IIoT Webinar Series

By FieldComm Group

May 28, 2016

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FieldComm Group has officially kicked-off a series of webinars on the topic of field communications and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT). The inaugural webinar, presented March 31 and moderated by Keith Larson, vice president content for Putman Media, looked at how IIoT-enabled digital automation solutions are revolutionizing plant operations in the process industries.

The webinar began with remarks by Ted Masters, president and CEO of FieldComm Group, who described how his organization’s technologies are helping the process industries to digitally connect to the data revealed by increasingly smart instrumentation, and to integrate that data with enterprise systems to advance business performance.

Focusing on the theme “A Formula for IIoT Success: Connect + Integrate = Value,” Masters explained how FieldComm Group technologies are driving the digital transformation to smarter plant operations, as enabled by developments such as the IIoT and Industry 4.0. Industrial organizations can connect to valuable information in intelligent field devices – regardless of protocol – by using FDI to integrate the information in a control system, asset management application or ERP system; then visualize and evaluate the data; and ultimately take action based on the information to prevent shutdowns, lower operating costs, reduce maintenance expenses, and become more predictive in how plants are run.”

Masters noted that FieldComm Group’s Plant of the Year Award recognizes the innovative use of FieldComm Group technologies in real-time industrial process plant applications. It is presented to end user companies that capture the value of digital transformation by improving plant performance, financials, safety and life cycle. Recipients of the award set a positive example for the industry worldwide to drive adoption.

Special guest for the webinar was Joel Holmes, who led the team at Monsanto’s Muscatine, Iowa, plant to the 2012 Plant of the Year award. Mr. Holmes has been with Monsanto for more than 20 years in a variety of maintenance, project and controls engineering roles. He currently serves as principal engineer, site electrical reliability, for the Muscatine facility.

Mr. Holmes’ presentation, titled “Get Off Your Seat and Increase Control Valve Reliability,” described how his company realigned its maintenance and operations culture around best practices that leverage the power of data to improve uptime and reduce costs. Monsanto engineers leveraged the full capabilities of HART Communication to “get connected” and integrate intelligent information from a large number of HART-enabled devices into their control systems, CMMS (SAP) and daily work processes. Use of intelligent device information significantly reduced costs and improved plant operations as it assisted the transition from reactive to proactive and predictive maintenance.

“By implementing condition-based monitoring techniques, we can effectively identify, diagnose, troubleshoot, and ultimately repair issues prior to their effects negatively impacting production,” Mr. Holmes said. “We were able to identify bad actors and save money in cost avoidance through our reliability program efforts.”

The webinar concluded with a Q&A involving the guest speakers and a final wrap-up.

FieldComm Group’s second webinar, titled “Smart Choices Start With Smart Devices – Is Anyone Listening,” was presented on May 25. Hosted by Jim Montague of Control magazine, it featured John Rezabek, process control specialist, Ashland Inc., as the guest presenter. Rezabek provided real-world examples of how big data and the IIoT, through the use of diagnostic data and alerts, can lend useful insights. Greater access to data facilitates a digital transformation and starts with the information from FOUNDATION Fieldbus and HART devices integrated to the enterprise.

Additional webinars topics will include: 

    • HART-IP: HART at the Speed of Ethernet!
    • IIoT for Process Control. Are You Ready?
    • WirelessHART Delivers Cost-effective Solutions in Steel Mill
    • HART – 10 Things You Might Not Know

For more information and to register for upcoming webinars, please email